This really ought to be called the Ferrero Rocher cabinet: truly with these appointments the Prime Minister is spoiling us. Sure I’ve got the odd quibble – Amber Rudd, for example, seems far too closely associated with the values of the discredited old regime to be welcomed back into the fold so soon; and I’d really been rooting either for Liz Truss or Jacob Rees Mogg to become Chancellor. But really this is nitpicking.
Not since Margaret Thatcher, I doubt, has there been quite such an overwhelmingly sound Cabinet. Indeed, I’m not sure that even Maggie herself managed to accumulate such soundness around one table when she first became PM; later maybe, but not on her first shot. I’m particularly happy to see Priti Patel, Liz Truss and Theresa Villiers given top jobs – and for the right reasons.
Sure it will suit Boris’s spin doctors to note how diverse and gender balanced the new team is. But they didn’t get the jobs because they were women or because Priti is ‘Asian’: they got them because they’re bright, talented and, well there’s really no other word for it, sound.
So what is this ‘sound’ quality I keep banging on about here? Well it’s what Maggie meant when she asked ‘Is he one of us?’.
Or to put it another way, these are Conservatives whose belief in free markets, limited government, free speech, personal responsibility and so on would definitely pass the Tebbit test and would almost certainly fail the Boles test. What’s not to like? Rejoice! Rejoice!